Poor oversight and loopholes mean risky virus research feared to have started the Covid pandemic in China continues to go on in the US.
That is the damning conclusion of a report — prompted by an explosive DailyMail.com revelation — into rules around ‘gain of function’ studies.
The Congressional watchdog group the Government Accountability Office (GAO) concluded that federal oversight of the most sensitive scientific experimentation was far too weak and ineffective.
In October, this website shockingly revealed that a Boston University team had created a new Covid strain with an 80 percent kill rate in mice, even though questions remain about whether similar experiments led to the release of Covid.
This type of research aims to understand the genetic makeup of viruses and how mutations can change their biological functions to become more transmissible and virulent. It often involves engineering pathogens to be more deadly or infectious, which makes stringent infection control procedures crucial.
Advocates of gain of function tests say it helps mankind get ahead of future pandemics, but critics say the risk of starting an outbreak outweighs any theoretical benefit.